Author Archive for Mike Paarlberg

At Spa World, Questions of “Abduction” and “Willful Refusal to Pay Wages”

The people giving you massages and fresh towels in between your bubble teas at Spa World, court records show, might not be getting paid, and some might not be able to leave.
The popular Korean spa in Centreville, Va., is the subject of a police investigation into accusations of nonpayment of wages, slave-like labor conditions, and prostitution, according [...]

“Billy Sexcrime,” Borat Character, Appears in Kazakhstan Embassy Promotional Book

Visitors to last Saturday’s “Around the World Embassy Tour,” part of the annual Passport DC festival, came away with a lot of free food and tchotchkes from the more than 50 diplomatic missions hosting open houses in the city. Perhaps no embassy was as generous with its swag as the Embassy of Kazakhstan, which distributed [...]

The Virginia Map Bill That Pissed Off Everyone Gets Quietly Signed

Last week, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe signed a bill he had promised Korean constituents he would sign, quietly and to very little fanfare. The reason is probably because, by then, he had succeeded in alienating both the Koreans he had courted as a candidate and the Japanese he tried to mollify as governor.
As I reported [...]

Matt Yglesias Doesn’t Want You to Get a Raise

Last Friday, Slate's Matt Yglesias came up with a rather unique interpretation of labor economics, musing about "the Left's big mistake about real wages and the economy." Addressing no actual person or piece of legislation coming from the left (or anywhere else for that matter), Yglesias warns that raising the salaries of everyone in the [...]

The Statistical Illiteracy of Washington Post Wonk Blogger Dylan Matthews

The recently concluded Chicago teachers strike widened cleavages that Democrats wish would go away: between organized labor and the charter school movement, between public sector workers and Democratic mayors like Rahm Emanuel. President Barack Obama refused to pick sides, but everyone else did. Mainstream media were no exception. Over at the Washington Post, few were [...]

North Korean Spy-Turned-Sausage Maker Reacts to Kim Jong-Il’s Death

“I’m so happy,” says Ma Young-Ae, the North Korean defector-turned-restaurateur profiled in our March 4 cover story, upon hearing news of Kim Jong-Il’s death.
The former counternarcotics officer in the North Korean intelligence services fled her homeland 11 years ago, a journey that took her through China and South Korea before she ended up running a [...]